15 july 2007

In my morning meditation book, the lesson today is about practicing what the author calls The Vacation Principle. She writes, "When you're a tourist, the place you are is the most important place there is. … Everything is fascinating."

That's exactly what I've been missing, that "everything is fascinating" feeling. Our first year here, everything was fascinating. We really were "on vacation." Here on the One Year Adventure plan, anxious to gobble up every new experience. Literally every single day brought something new and oh so foreign. Qu’elle surprise! I'm surprised we still have functioning adrenals.

Since we chose to stay on, the new is gone. That excitement, the rush of doing something dangerous. [I know, living in Costa Rica is hardly dangerous. But it seemed so at the time.] And thank God. Who could live totally baffled and in a constant state of what-is-THAT? The most disconcerting aspect of culture shock and the single hardest thing to conquer, is feeling alienated. Of being totally 100% surrounded by the unfamiliar. When we first got here, we kept eating at McDonald's. We don't even like McDonald's. But it was familiar. Man, that's pathetic.

So now we're at home, nesting, feeling familiar, loving our lives here. The pull of Key West is less and less. We still desperately miss our friends, but more and more we scheme to get them HERE. We have lost the need to go there.

The flip side to all this familiarity, especially after all the high drama of our first year, is that, like my new friend Poco Loco said, "It's like the day after Christmas." I've been missing the excitement of discovery.

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